RLJ Entertainment Acquires Baseball Drama THE PHENOM, Starring Ethan Hawke
RLJ Entertainment (NASDAQ: RLJE) has acquired all U.S. rights to the baseball drama THE PHENOM. Written and directed by Noah Buschel (The Missing Person, Glass Chin), the film stars Academy Award nominees Ethan Hawke (Boyhood, Training Day) and Paul Giamatti (Straight Outta Compton, Sideways) as well as Johnny Simmons (The Perks of Being a Wallflower) and Sophie KENNEDY Clark (The Danish Girl). RLJE plans to release THE PHENOM in theaters and On Demand on June 24, 2016. The film will make its World Premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival on April 17th. Mark Ward, RLJ Entertainment's Chief Acquisitions Officer, made the announcement today.
"As an avid baseball fan, I was immediately drawn to this story but it is about much more than just the sport," said Ward. "Ethan Hawke, Paul Giamatti and Johnny Simmons bring to the life the struggles within the sport of getting to the top and the cost you sometimes have to pay to get there."
In THE PHENOM, when major-league rookie pitcher Hopper Gibson (Johnny Simmons) can't find the plate, he's sent down to the minor leagues and begins sessions with an unorthodox sports psychologist (Paul Giamatti). In the process, hidden conflicts with his overbearing father (Ethan Hawke) are brought to light.
THE PHENOM was produced by Antonia Bogdanovich (Phantom Halo), Jeff Elliott (Blunt Force Trauma), Kim Jose (Precious) and Jeff Rice (Lone Survivor).
Jess De Leo, Senior Vice President of Legal and Business Affairs for RLJ Entertainment along with Ward negotiated the deal with William Morris Endeavor on behalf of the filmmakers.
RLJ Entertainment's recent feature films include Bone Tomahawk starring Kurt Russell, Patrick Wilson, Matthew FOX and Richard Jenkins and written & directed by S. Craig Zahler; Criminal Activities with John Travolta, Michael Pitt and Dan Stevens and directed by Jackie Earle Haley; The Cobbler with Adam Sandler and Steve Buscemi and directed by Academy Award Winner Tom McCarthy; and Nina starring Zoe Saldana and David Oyelowo and directed by Cynthia Mort. www.us.rljentertainment.com.
ABOUT RLJ ENTERTAINMENT RLJ Entertainment, Inc. (NASDAQ: RLJE) is a premier independent owner, developer, licensee, and distributor of entertainment content and programming in primarily North America, the United Kingdom, and Australia. RLJE is a leader in numerous genres including feature films and urban with distinct content via its owned and distributed brands such as Acorn (British TV), Acacia (fitness), and Athena (documentaries). These titles are distributed in multiple formats including broadcast television (including satellite and cable), theatrical and non-theatrical, DVD, Blu-Ray, digital download, and digital streaming.
Through Acorn Media Enterprises, its UK development arm, RLJE owns all rights to the hit UK mystery series FOYLE'S WAR and is developing new programs. RLJE owns 64% of Agatha Christie Limited, which manages the intellectual property and publishing rights to some of the greatest works of mystery fiction, including stories of the iconic sleuths Miss Marple and Poirot.
RLJE leverages its management experience to acquire, distribute and monetize existing and original content for its many distribution channels, including its branded digital subscription channels, Acorn TV, AcaciaTV, and UMC - Urban Movie Channel, and engages distinct audiences with programming that appeals directly to their unique viewing interests. Through its proprietary e-commerce web sites and print catalogs for the Acorn and Acacia brands, RLJE has direct contacts and billing relationships with millions of consumers. For more information, please visit www.RLJEntertainment.com.